skyscript.co.uk
   

home articles forum events
glossary horary quiz consultations links more

Read this before using the forum
Register
FAQ
Search
View memberlist
View/edit your user profile
Log in to check your private messages
Log in
Recent additions:
Can assassinations be prevented? by Elsbeth Ebertin
translated by Jenn Zahrt PhD
A Guide to Interpreting The Great American Eclipse
by Wade Caves
The Astrology of Depression
by Judith Hill
Understanding the mean conjunctions of the Jupiter-Saturn cycle
by Benjamin Dykes
Understanding the zodiac: and why there really ARE 12 signs of the zodiac, not 13
by Deborah Houlding

Skyscript Astrology Forum

Traditional Indian Astrology Website
Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Forum Index -> News, Notices, Books, Links
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
dieterkoch



Joined: 28 Nov 2011
Posts: 21
Location: zurich, switzerland

Posted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Varuna,

I appreciate your honesty and open mind. I understand that this is emotionally difficult stuff for Hindu astrologers. However, it seems to me that in order to find the path to truth and enlightenment one has to practice non-attachment and objectivity. This is what the Vedic and Vedantic texts themselves teach, isn´t it?

I am a bit astonished that you are talking about a "revision" of my article. I did not revise it and I wonder what exactly you read. Probably the statements which you took offense with are still in it and you just overlooked them. Or did you read another article? The German version of it? Today I realised that it ends with two paragraphs of a former version which I had thought I had deleted.

varuna wrote:

The article gave the appearance of being designed to uproot hindu thought.


No, this article is the result of my research on the topic. True, I do not believe that Hindu astrology is really Vedic, but there are also Hindus who say that "Vedic" astrology is not Vedic at all and even in contradiction with the Vedas (e.g. famous Avtar Krishen Kaul). Also true: I believe that the teachings of Advaitavedanta are not in agreement with the Vedas, especially not with the Gita. But here again, I have support from other Hindu philosophical schools, which, however, are a minority. So I do not "uproot" anything that has not been "uprooted" before me, by real Hindus with a spiritual background.

As to the problem that the Law of Manu seems to forbid astrology: A Hindu astrologer (a real Hindu!) explained me: Astrology is ok as long as one does not earn one´s living with it. I think, you can read Manu in this sense. Whether this is really what he meant, I am not sure. But is it so important? According to the teachings of Krishna there is only one thing that matters: Everything one does should be done as an offering to him. The true yogi lives upon "what is left of his offerings".

The verses in the Ramayana Epic about the birth of Rama and his brothers are highly problematic. They are not contained in all editions of the epic, and not in the Baroda Critical Edition. There have been many emotional debates about them in Hindu forums. There is no agreement about how exactly to interpret these verses. Besides, all attempts to find a historical date that fits the text seem to fail.

As to the problems of the tropical zodiac and the history of the zodiac in general, please forgive me that I do not want to discuss this complicated topic in a forum and spend a lot of time with it, especially as I am working on an essay about it, which I hope to publish very soon. After it will be published, I will be ready to discuss.

Kind regards

Dieter
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Eddy



Joined: 04 Feb 2009
Posts: 922
Location: Netherlands

Posted: Sat Dec 03, 2011 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dieterkoch wrote:
True, I do not believe that Hindu astrology is really Vedic, but there are also Hindus who say that "Vedic" astrology is not Vedic at all and even in contradiction with the Vedas (e.g. famous Avtar Krishen Kaul).
I doubt whether 'Hindu astrology' would be an any better term. Better is to call it 'Indian astrology', or since there are Persian elements in it, 'Astrology as practiced by most Indian people'.

Dieter Koch's article wrote:
The tropical-sidereal problem becomes even more complicated by the fact that the sidereal zodiac is used in a quite different way in Indian astrology than the tropical zodiac in western astrology. Traditional Indian astrology is extremely focused on fate prediction and character compatibility (for weddings) and not so much on psychological character interpretation, as taught in the West.
Ancient western was/is also about the more material things in life.

I once read an Indian astrologer commenting on this fate or litteral view. He argued that the astrology was indeed for prediction and concrete issues etc. For the spiritual part Indians have their religious scriptures etc.

I think that 500 years ago in Western Europe it was not much different. For future issues or wanting to know if a seaman would ever return from the East, one would go to the astrologer. For spiritual needs one consulted a priest. Nowadays people don't go to church anymore but consult a psychological astrologer. And they send an email to find out whether the seaman is still above the water surface.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mark
Moderator


Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4985
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Sat Dec 03, 2011 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eddy wrote:
Quote:
I doubt whether 'Hindu astrology' would be an any better term. Better is to call it 'Indian astrology', or since there are Persian elements in it, 'Astrology as practiced by most Indian people'.


I quite agree. Its equally inaccurate. Martin Gansten has made this point on a previous thread. The terms Indian and Vedic or Hindu astrology are not synonymous. There is also an ancient and venerable tradition of Jain astrology in India. Like the Buddhists the Jains rejected the spiritual authority of the Vedas and are certainly not Hindu. They have not received the attention they deserve for several reasons. Firstly, the relatively small size of the Jain community, its cultural inclusiveness, and and the obsession in some modern largely Vaishnavite circles to present the development of Indian astrology as exclusively 'Vedic' or 'Hindu'.

Both terms are a total misnomer. In ancient India there was no 'Hinduism' in the modern sense of the word. The Vedas were not universally recognized as texts of religious authority in much of India. The Buddhist and Jain religious texts make it clear there was a lot of religious pluralism in ancient India before Brahmanism or Vedism became the dominant religious world view across India. For example during the The Maurya Empire, Ashoka the Great (304 BCE–232 BCE) encouraged religious tolerance between the different religions but favoured Buddhism by supporting Buddhist missionaries across the world.

In the period following the decline of the Maurya Empire and the conquests of Alexander the Great north-western India (modern Pakistan/Afghanistan) was controlled by a series of Indo-Greek Kingdoms which were Buddhist. Note: Hence the presence of the so called Bamiyan Buddha destroyed by the Taliban.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indo-Greek_kingdom

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greco-Bactrian_Kingdom

The transmission of Greek astrology to India probably came through these Indo-Greek Buddhists.

What is interesting about the Jain astrological tradition is that most of its classic texts remain untranslated. I suspect the more homogenous nature of Jain cultural development may prove an extremely rich resource of ancient Indian astrological lore for researchers in the future. Unfortunately, many of the texts currently held up as classics of ancient Indian astrology (e.g. Brihat Parashara Hora Shashtra) are quite clearly riddled with later interpolations.

Mark
_________________
‘’As thou conversest with the heavens, so instruct and inform thy minde according to the image of Divinity…’’ William Lilly
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
varuna



Joined: 03 Nov 2011
Posts: 49
Location: Lemuria

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 3:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

om
_________________
Declining from the public ways, walk in unfrequented paths. - Pythagoras
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
dieterkoch



Joined: 28 Nov 2011
Posts: 21
Location: zurich, switzerland

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eddie and Mark,

Eddy wrote:

Dieter Koch's article wrote:
The tropical-sidereal problem becomes even more complicated by the fact that the sidereal zodiac is used in a quite different way in Indian astrology than the tropical zodiac in western astrology. Traditional Indian astrology is extremely focused on fate prediction and character compatibility (for weddings) and not so much on psychological character interpretation, as taught in the West.

Ancient western was/is also about the more material things in life.
...
I think that 500 years ago in Western Europe it was not much different.


Thank you. Indeed, this part of the article needs a review.

Mark wrote:
Eddy wrote:
Quote:
I doubt whether 'Hindu astrology' would be an any better term. Better is to call it 'Indian astrology', or since there are Persian elements in it, 'Astrology as practiced by most Indian people'.

I quite agree. Its equally inaccurate. Martin Gansten has made this point on a previous thread. The terms Indian and Vedic or Hindu astrology are not synonymous. There is also an ancient and venerable tradition of Jain astrology in India.


I have not seen that post of Martin Gansten that you refer to, so I may miss the point in what follows. If you could give me a link or tell me what he said, I would appreciate.

As to the "Jain astrological tradition", Mark: By using this expression, you apparently agree that there is also a "Hindu astrological tradition", don´t you? Anyway, Jain astrologers and Buddhists are really not present in these discussions. We are usually discussing with Hindus. At least I am.

In my opinion, it does not matter much what we call it, except for one point. The term "Vedic" contains a claim of spiritual authority and divine revelation. This is mere religious propaganda, and not the truth, as I have tried to show. It is for this reason that I prefer the term "Hindu astrology", because it does not contain any propaganda. Against "Indian astrology", the term "Hindu astrology" has the advantage that (1) it mentions those with whom we are mostly discussing (ignoring Western "Vedic" astrologers, though) and (2) expresses the fact that this astrology is indeed imbedded in a religious belief system. In my opinion it is much more precise and telling than "Indian astrology".

I have to concede that I know very little about the Jain tradition. I assume that the techniques are very similar as in the Hindu tradition, but I do not know exactly what ramifications my article has for Jain astrology. But then, again, it is wise to avoid the more general term "Indian astrology".

Dieter
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Martin Gansten
Moderator


Joined: 05 Jul 2008
Posts: 1268
Location: Malmö, Sweden

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 10:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't want to get too embroiled either in this discussion or in the related tropical/sidereal one (from which I have kept away despite the occasional itch on seeing certain remarks on both sides!), but as my name came up:

To my mind, 'Indian astrology' is a slightly preferable term to 'Hindu astrology', but really the difference isn't all that great. 'Hindu', after all, originally means nothing but 'Indian', and although Jainism is indeed an ancient tradition separate from Vedic and post-Vedic ones, it underwent an extensive 'Hinduization' in medieval times, and in practice many Jains do define themselves as Hindus of a sort. The important thing is to avoid 'Vedic', because that term is simply historically inaccurate.

However, I don't think this argument really holds up:

dieterkoch wrote:
"Hindu astrology" has the advantage that [...] [it] expresses the fact that this astrology is indeed imbedded in a religious belief system.

Hinduism is such an enormously diverse collection of traditions and beliefs (including the acceptance or rejection of astrology), embraced by almost a billion individuals, that little if anything is learned about a form of astrology by designating it as Hindu. As far as I can see, all forms of astrology everywhere in the world (including the modern western world) have been embedded in religious and other cultural belief systems; there is nothing different about Indian astrology in this regard.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Mark
Moderator


Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4985
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 11:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Dieter

First off congratulations on your article and indeed book. I do hope you consider having it all published in English. You have pulled together a lot of useful scholarship and raised some really challenging questions. I think the time is right for this more critical kind of approach. Western astrologers have been going back through astrological history to trace their heritage and its time Indian astrologers did the same. The difference though , as you point out, is that in India this has become tied to religious beliefs which often obscure an honest appraisal of the evidence.

Dieterkoch wrote:
Quote:
Anyway, Jain astrologers and Buddhists are really not present in these discussions. We are usually discussing with Hindus.


In contemporary discussions you are no doubt right that the overwhelming amount of contemporary Indian astrology is within the Hindu community. If that is your only focus I see your point. My emphasis was instead referring back to the title of this thread-Ancient Indian Astrology. I dont think it is entirely accurate to describe indigenous Indian astrological practices as exclusively 'Hindu'.

Much of what we understand as characteristically part of the Hindu religion today developed following the Muslims invasions of India. In particular the shift towards the more devotional Bhakti movements and a more clearly monotheist trend in Indian religion away from the monism of earlier Vedanta.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhakti_movement

India was also more religiously plural at the time astrological ideas came from the west. I know that Martin has previously dismissed any Buddhist involvement in this citing early Buddhist opposition to astrology. There may be some truth in this. However, I think the more heterodox Mahayana Buddhists may well have been more open to astrology. We see this in Tibetan Buddhism today. One interesting phenomena today is the presence of Indian astrological ideas amongst the Singhalese Buddhists of Sri Lanka. We have also had Pakistani Muslims on Skyscript who claim to be astrologers. Clearly then Indian astrological ideas transcend the religious divide.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astrology_in_Sri_Lanka

Dieterkoch wrote:
Quote:
As to the "Jain astrological tradition", Mark: By using this expression, you apparently agree that there is also a "Hindu astrological tradition", don´t you?


Afraid not. I dont think using the term 'Jain astrology' means I have to accept your term 'Hindu astrology.' Rather I see Jain astrology today as simply another sub-set of Indian astrology in the same way contemporary schools such as the Jaimini or Tajika are.


Dieterkoch wrote:
Quote:
I have to concede that I know very little about the Jain tradition. I assume that the techniques are very similar as in the Hindu tradition, but I do not know exactly what ramifications my article has for Jain astrology. But then, again, it is wise to avoid the more general term "Indian astrology".


I am no authority either.
Here is a link to a piece on Jain astrology from the website I mentioned at the start of this article:

http://www.ancientindianastrology.com/cmsa/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=63:jain-school-of-astrology&catid=36:nirayana-jyotisha&Itemid=59

There are a few books around on contemporary Jain astrology being sold by Indian astrological bookstores. These can be purchased online.

More generally, I think your criticism that Indian astrology is implictly inferior due to its lack of character analysis with signs is rather unfair. This seems to reflect the bias of modern western astrology. If you look at texts in the western astrological tradition you will also find relatively little description of personality by sign. Vettius Valens is very unusual amongst hellenistic authors is devoting any space to describing the signs by psychological characteristics. Generally, in traditional astrology the description of signs is quite terse. This tradition continues down to the 17th century and we can still see it amongst astrologers like William Lilly.

Here is William Lilly's description of the sign of Aries:

http://www.renaissanceastrology.com/aries.html

There is usually far more emphasis on the role of planets as the active agents and psychological determinants in signs, as house rulers and by aspectual relationship. In essence Indian astrology has retained this hellenistic and medieval approach while modern western astrology has moved towards 'signism'.

Mark
_________________
‘’As thou conversest with the heavens, so instruct and inform thy minde according to the image of Divinity…’’ William Lilly


Last edited by Mark on Sun Dec 04, 2011 12:46 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Mark
Moderator


Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4985
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 12:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Martin Gansten wrote:
Quote:
'Hindu', after all, originally means nothing but 'Indian', and although Jainism is indeed an ancient tradition separate from Vedic and post-Vedic ones, it underwent an extensive 'Hinduization' in medieval times, and in practice many Jains do define themselves as Hindus of a sort.


Hello Martin,

I dont deny Jainism has gone through significant changes over the last 2,500 years. Although due to its limited geographical area and numerical size Jainism has certainly remained more homogeneous than other faiths such as Hinduism or Buddhism. In any case I was really making a point on the antquity of some of the Jain texts in Prakrit which may give interesting insights into the earlier Indian astrological tradition. My interest was more the historical origins of Indian astrology rather than just contemporary practice.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jainism

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prakrit

To survive the small Jain community in western India have had to fit into the majority Hindu culture around it. That included being fitted into the Hindu caste system. Still, the Jains I have met here in the UK would not consider themselves Hindu. They are very proud of the ancient Jain faith and its traditions which distinguish them from mainstream Hinduism. In a cultural, or sociological sense though Jainism did become seen by many Hindu's as just another indigenous sect. Whether because of this and factors such as high literacy Jains have had an influence far exceeding their numbers in Indian society. For example, the Gujarat born Mahatma Gandhi seems to have been partially influenced by Jain ethical values in his teachings.

If the Jain community really accepted your position though they would not have campaigned so vigorously to be defined as a non-Hindu religious minority at the time of the framing of the Indian constitution.

Mark
_________________
‘’As thou conversest with the heavens, so instruct and inform thy minde according to the image of Divinity…’’ William Lilly
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Martin Gansten
Moderator


Joined: 05 Jul 2008
Posts: 1268
Location: Malmö, Sweden

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 5:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark wrote:
I was really making a point on the antquity of some of the Jain texts in Prakrit which may give interesting insights into the earlier Indian astrological tradition. My interest was more the historical origins of Indian astrology rather than just contemporary practice.

I probably use the word 'astrology' in a more narrow sense than you do. There was some indigenous star-lore in India before horoscopic astrology was imported wholesale in the early centuries CE, and at least some of this lore was in fact Vedic, but I am not aware of any of it being explicitly Jaina. So if we want to call such star-lore 'astrology', then I think there is more evidence of early 'Vedic astrology' than of early 'Jaina astrology'. In any case, neither has very much to do with later Indian astrology.

Quote:
In a cultural, or sociological sense though Jainism did become seen by many Hindu's as just another indigenous sect. [...] If the Jain community really accepted your position though they would not have campaigned so vigorously to be defined as a non-Hindu religious minority at the time of the framing of the Indian constitution.

It's not my position; I'm just reporting a fact. Even the relatively small Jain community is not completely homogenous, and a fair number of Jains actually give their religious affiliation as 'Jain-Hindu' or 'Hindu-Jain'. I don't make these things up. Smile

Later edit: I forgot to mention that some well-known classical texts on Indian astrology (e. g., the Mānasāgarī) were authored by Jains. Except for the introductory verses invoking divine blessings (common in all types of Sanskrit works, religious or secular), though, you couldn't tell. It's standard Indian astrology with no distinguishing features -- quite unlike works on Tājika, which is very much a separate tradition (and one which, again, was embraced by Jains and Hindus alike).
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Mark
Moderator


Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4985
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 11:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From a brief look at the website linked to in this thread I got some further information about the Jain contribution to Indian astrology. For example from Karnataka alone there were important texts by Jain astrologers such as Kalakacharya (the originator of Ramala Jyotish), and the astronomer/mathematician Mahaveeracharya (Jyotisha Patala and Ganita sara samgraha) which became popular texts in this state. Other important Jain contributions include the Adbhuta Sagara written by the Jain king Ballala sena in the 13th century CE. There is also research that the famous Indian astronomer Aryabhata originated from a Jain background.

http://www.scribd.com/doc/14146948/Identification-of-Asmaka-Aryabhata-and-Jain-Tradition

Mark
_________________
‘’As thou conversest with the heavens, so instruct and inform thy minde according to the image of Divinity…’’ William Lilly
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Martin Gansten
Moderator


Joined: 05 Jul 2008
Posts: 1268
Location: Malmö, Sweden

Posted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 8:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark wrote:
From a brief look at the website linked to in this thread I got some further information about the Jain contribution to Indian astrology. For example from Karnataka alone there were important texts by Jain astrologers such as Kalakacharya (the originator of Ramala Jyotish)

The Jains have indeed played an important part in the intellectual history of India, including astrology. Ramala, however, did not originate with them: it is Sanskritized Arabic geomancy. The name derives from Arabic raml, 'sand'.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
dieterkoch



Joined: 28 Nov 2011
Posts: 21
Location: zurich, switzerland

Posted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Mark and Martin,

thanks a lot for your comments. Criticism is very welcome, it helps me to improve my text (and the book from which it is taken).

Mark wrote:

More generally, I think your criticism that Indian astrology is implictly inferior due to its lack of character analysis with signs is rather unfair. This seems to reflect the bias of modern western astrology. ...


You are right. I am aware that this is the weakest part of the article. Today I updated it and hope it is a bit better now.

Dieter
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
varuna



Joined: 03 Nov 2011
Posts: 49
Location: Lemuria

Posted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 11:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

om indraya namaha

I didn't want to come back here anymore, and I am not planning on responding to anything here anymore, but this usurpation of the zodiac by jyotish idea has never been seriously pondered by me until recently, so I wasn't able to respond appropriately in previous posts, due to the freshness and seriousness of this new-to-me, pondering of this type of information.

After further reflections on the matter, it occurred to me that some people will take this idea that the 360 divided by twelve idea, since it appears that it originated in the near east and not in bharata, is proof that the jyotish zodiac is an erroneous application of this idea to the fixed star nakshatra system.

Now, let us assume for the sake of argument, that this idea of the zodiac being transferred from the hellenists or persians or whoever, to India, is true.

I may be wrong about this, but it appears that the Western version of the time-frame of this spread of the zodiac through the ancient world, happened when the two zodiacs basically corresponded with each other, i.e. the sidereal signs were basically situated where the tropical signs were.

Now, since India already had a star-based nakshatra astrology system, it was perfectly natural to create a placement of the zodiac within the star-based nakshatras, and continue adjusting the astrology frame of reference with the stars.

Whereas, in the Near East the zodiac was adjusted to the astrology frame of reference with the vernal equinox as the centuries progressed.

Let us assume for the sake of argument that the rulerships and various other astrology rules were developed around the time of the approximate convergence of the stars and the seasons.

This leaves us with the knowledge that these basic astrology rules were created when the two zodiacs were positioned about the same.

Premise: The 12 sign zodiac and certain rules, were created when the sidereal and tropical zodiacs were together.

Therefore, the conclusion that because the zodiac originated in the Near East, means that the sidereal zodiac is false, is erroneous and does not follow from the premises. This idea of the usurpation of the zodiac by jyotish does not invalidate the sidereal system. We could easily suggest that certain basic astrology rules were created at the time when the two zodiacs approximately coincided, therefore, it cannot be claimed with certainty that the zodiac and various astrology rules, applied to the seasons and not the stars.

In reality, assuming this Western-claimed historical information is true, we still do not actually know which zodiac is the "correct" one. One could easily create an argument in support of the sidereal zodiac based on this information.

It does seem like a wise idea not to argue about which zodiac is "correct." It seems like in these situations we all end up with a bad taste in our mouth and nothing was gained. I myself, gave a good bad example, in a thread I created in response to this issue, on how not to approach and discuss this issue.

In the end, we are each likely to continue using whichever system we prefer.

I made plenty of questionable statements in this thread, including Hindu rules concerning wealth and astrology and such (contrary to the Manusmrti). I found myself in the strange position of trying to defend jyotish astrology based on Hindu rules, but the later developments of the thread, reminded me that one of my gurus was a Jain and he said that Jainism is the oldest teaching in bharata (this is of course hotly contested as well). Given that contemporary scholars have likely misdated the Buddha to the 5th century bc rather than the 19th century bc, I am skeptical of the dating of Mahavira to the 6th century bc. Contemporary scholars have sometimes claimed that Mahavira was the founder of Jainism, but according to the Jains themselves, Mahavira came along long after Jainism was founded. The Jains say Mahavira revived the age-old Jain tradition. Mahavira was the 24th tirthankara! One of the tirthankaras was also a woman. I suspect Mahavira was around the 16th century bc. and the other tirthankaras stretch back into the mists of time.

My mistake in this thread was to accept the premise that jyotish astrology only applies to Hindu tradition. The other mistake was to accept the premise that Hindu thought is the source of all of India's traditions. The third mistake was to not recognize immediately, that the zodiacs were converged at the same time that the zodiac was alleged to have been systematized and spread throughout the ancient world. So now we are back where we started - nowhere. Right where I like to be!

shanti

om
_________________
Declining from the public ways, walk in unfrequented paths. - Pythagoras
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mark
Moderator


Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 4985
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Posted: Thu Dec 08, 2011 2:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Varuna wrote:
Quote:
Given that contemporary scholars have likely misdated the Buddha to the 5th century bc rather than the 19th century bc, I am skeptical of the dating of Mahavira to the 6th century bc.


I dont think that suggestion regarding the dating of the Buddha or Mahavira is very credible. There has been considerable debate over sources and whether the Buddha lived in the 6th , 5th or even into the 4th century BCE. Unlike the Greek or Roman cultures the ancient Indians were not that interested in recording historical developments. We see the same difficulty in dating Indian astrological sources. The Buddha's life can be timed with some approximation from dating of Kings etc mentioned in the Buddhist scriptures and later royal lineages such as the reign of Ashoka the Great which are directly linked to the parinibbana of the Buddha. From Buddhist texts we know the Buddha was a younger contemporary of Mahavira.

The Theravada Buddhist Pali canon records that Mahavira and Gautama Buddha were contemporaries and according to the Pali scriptures Gautama Buddha was aware of Mahavira's existence as well as his community of monks. The Pali Canon does not record that the two teachers ever met, but there are several instances of Mahavira's disciples questioning Gautama Buddha to be found in various suttas.

In the more conservative Theravada Buddhist countries (Thailand, Burma, Laos, Cambodia, Sri Lanka) the life of the Buddha is dated 623 BCE to 543 BCE. Hence in the Theravada or southern Buddhist calendar the year is therefore currently 2,544 of the Buddhist era (BE) since the passing away or parinibbana of the Buddha.

However, scholars have tended to favour later dates.

This from Wikipedia:

Quote:
According to the Pāli historical chronicles of Sri Lanka, the Dīpavaṃsa and Mahāvaṃsa, the coronation of Aśoka (Pāli: Asoka) is 218 years after the death of Buddha. According to two textual records in Chinese , the coronation of Aśoka is 116 years after the death of Buddha. Therefore, the time of Buddha's passing is either 486 BCE according to Theravāda record or 383 BCE according to Mahayana record. However, the actual date traditionally accepted as the date of the Buddha's death in Theravāda countries is 544 or 543 BCE, because the reign of Aśoka was traditionally reckoned to be about 60 years earlier than current estimates.

.........Recent indological studies have indicated that the Parinibbana of the Buddha may be even later than previously supposed. A majority of the scholars at a symposium held in 1988 in Göttingen regarding the problem were inclined towards a date of 440–360 BCE. However, their calculations were based on the chronology of Tibetan Buddhism, preferred over that of the Dipavamsa/Mahavamasa; the modified chronology, in order to work, needs to identify the Indian ruler Kalasoka, son of Susunaga, with the Emperor Asoka, son of Bindusara. It should also be noted that the Sri Lankan chronicles are based on even earlier works and that the Buddhist canon was first put into writing in Sri Lanka.


I am scepitical of the research linked to the Tibetan texts both because it relies on a much later written source and it ignores the need to link the Buddhas's life to that of Mahavira. The traditional Jaina date for Mahavira's birth is 599 BC and his death 527BCE , but it probably came somewhat later than this if we consider the life of Buddha and the dates for the Magadha kings Bimbisara and Ajatashatru.

A popular date used by western scholars for the Buddhas birth (566 BCE) would mean Mahavira was already 33 at the time of the Buddha's birth. The Jain scriptures maintain Mahavira died at the age of 72. Buddhist tradition claims Guatama Siddartha became enlightened and therefore a Buddha (literally the title Buddha means 'the awakened one'') at the age of 35. Using the Jaina chronology Mahavira would have been 67 by then (531 BCE) which about 5 years before the death of Mahavira. This is not totally implausible although it could equally be the case that Mahivira was born some years later than Jaina tradition maintains or the Buddha a few years earlier than the popular date of 566 BCE for his birth.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magadha

You are quite correct though that the Jains claim their religion is much older. The Jains believe in the "present age" there have been 24 tirthankaras - although there is little evidence for the existence of most of these. Mahavira is claimed as the most recent. However, there is some evidence of what the Jains claim as the tirthankara preceding Mahavira who was a figure called Parshva. He allegedly lived about 250 years before Mahavira and was the possible founder of Jainism. The Buddhists have a similar notion of the Buddha being one in a successon of Buddhas.

It has been suggested that modern Hinduism is essentially an amalgam of two contrasting and at times conflicting traditions in Indian ancient indigenous religion. Firstly, the familar Vedic-Brahmanic strand focused on rituals, sacrifices, external observances and the caste system. Secondly, the shramanic strand focused on the inner spiritual life and denying worldly pleasures.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shramana

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddhism_and_Jainism

It has been claimed the shramana is the original pre-Brahmanic religion of India. The Jains and Buddhists were part of that ancient shramana tradition. In the ancient world that dimension was represented by numerous other sects too such as the Samkhya and Ajivikas etc. Samkhya was later linked in with the theistic The Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali that constitute the foundational text of Rāja Yoga. Togther Yoga-Samkhya became one one of the six orthodox āstika schools of Hindu philosophy, and Rāja Yoga is the highest (or royal) practice. However, it seems that Samkhya started out as a non-theistic, school of thought that stemmed from the shramana or non-vedic tradition.

Most shramanas followed yogic practices such as meditation and lived as alms mendicants. They had a common emphasis on ideas such as Karma, rebirth, samsara, ahimsa and moksha. Some claim the Upanishads came from a reforming wing in Brahmanism influenced by shramanism while others see it as fundamentally a product of shramanism itself.

Mark
_________________
‘’As thou conversest with the heavens, so instruct and inform thy minde according to the image of Divinity…’’ William Lilly


Last edited by Mark on Sun Dec 11, 2011 4:04 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
varuna



Joined: 03 Nov 2011
Posts: 49
Location: Lemuria

Posted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 9:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

om indraya namaha

The thought occurred today, that our generations of astrologers have a task ahead of them. This task requires a study of the available astronomical and astrological texts from the oldest remaining literature in the traditions both east and west. From the little bit of study I have done thus far, I know the ancient texts in India sometimes emphasize the Solar year, and sometimes the Lunar year, and sometimes the Tropical Zodiac, and sometimes the Sidereal zodiac.

What the next generation of astrology students need to do, is to create a fusion of the differing cycles into one chart. This chart would have layers to it and would include the various frames of reference in one wheel, sort of like synastry charts, but with more layers and more complexity. This is easily possible today with computers.

I do not believe it is about which 360 divided by twelve idea is the correct one; I believe they are both important, combined with the lunar nakshatras and the rulerships and rules which pertain alone to the star-based nakshatras.

The various astrology rules from both the east and the west would be only applied to those levels of the chart which they pertain to.

If charts are created with many layers, rather than future astrologers only learning the time-tested rules applying to their system and fighting with each other who is right, they will be encouraged to work together and create a new astrology that makes the current state of affairs look like the story of the 4 men and the elephant in the dark, who each only understood the part they touched, and then argued about the nature of an elephant based on their limited perception of the elephant.

In India charts were written in a counterclockwise direction north of the equator and in a clockwise direction south of the equator; this worked for the sidereal zodiac. The northern and southern hemisphere calculations of this new fusion chart I am envisioning, would have to have this calculation included in the new fusion chart, and the Sun cycle tropical zodiac level/aspect would need to be reversed for southern charts.

It would be simple to interlay the zodiacs in whichever order and place they belong, depending on whether it is a northern or southern chart, by simply laying the zodiacs and nakshatras on the outside of the circle. One layer would be the respective tropical zodiac, and one layer would be the sidereal and lunar nakshatra/zodiac. Then the program would have more than one ayanamsha option and details like this.

Not only would the fighting be over on if an elephant has the nature of a pillar (the leg one person touched), or the nature of a fan (the ear another person touched), but it would also address the astrology persecution. No one would be able to point out the discrepancy between the 12 constellations and the signs, and no one would be able to point out the northern-southern hemisphere issue. Astrology would be covered from all assaults both within and without. Not that we need to be concerned with what someone else thinks, but it would help the situation.

The belligerent astrology/er persecutors could just be told to chew on hologram universes and epistemology for awhile.

There is a 60 year cycle used in jyotish and chinese astrology, which may be based on a Jupiter-Saturn cycle, and the 12 year chinese astrology system may refer to the Jupiter cycle. We could find these kind of similarities and incorporate them into this new astrology system.

Maybe it is time for more intensive broader scholarship and a new paradigm.

Maybe I am dreaming.

om
_________________
Declining from the public ways, walk in unfrequented paths. - Pythagoras


Last edited by varuna on Sat Dec 10, 2011 12:55 am; edited 3 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Forum Index -> News, Notices, Books, Links All times are GMT
Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Next
Page 3 of 5

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
. Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group

       
Contact Deborah Houlding  | terms and conditions  
All rights on all text and images reserved. Reproduction by any means is not permitted without the express
agreement of Deborah Houlding or in the case of articles by guest astrologers, the copyright owner indictated